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Previewing the 2024 New Wave Dermatology Conference


Tiffani Botts Massey, PA-C, Florida Society of Dermatology PAs President Elect, and Heather Gates, PA-C, the organization's current president, preview the upcoming conference.

New Wave Dermatology logo

Next weekend, more than 325 attendees from 26 states, including attendees from Canada, will convene in Orlando, Florida, from May 30 to June 2 for the Florida Society of Dermatology Physician Assistants' (FSDPA) annual New Wave Dermatology Conference.

The conference is primed to have its largest year yet, with more sponsors and attendees than ever before and broadened aesthetic educational opportunities and lectures.

With a blend of physician, PA, and nurse practitioner speakers, the volunteer-run conference will also feature renowned individuals in the dermatology and aesthetics spaces, including Erika Bunny ("Injector Bunny"); Suneel Chilukuri, MD, FAAD, FACMS; Hayley Wood, NP; Hadar Lev-Tov, MD; and Mark Kaufmann, MD, FAAD, past president of the American Academy of Dermatology.

At this time, registration for the conference is nearly full. Interested attendees are invited to visit the FSDPA's New Wave registration page before seats are full.

General Education and Personalizable Tracks

Tiffani Botts Massey, PA-C, is the president elect of the FSDPA and works alongside Scott Freeman, PA-C, to select all of the conference's lecture topics and speakers. Speakers are chosen by hand and individually invited to participate via Botts Massey and Freeman's personal emails, adding a personalized, hands-on touch to outreach.

Freeman is spearheading the conference's general sessions, while Botts Massey looks forward to the conference's use of tracks this year.

"I think I'm most excited about that," she said. "It's going to make it so we can do some really deep dives into some amazing medical dermatology topics in the general sessions. We have created a beginner track, which is geared for PAs with either no derm experience, or PAs and nurse practitioners, about how to deal with these advanced medications we write, feeling comfortable with Accutane...stuff that we all would have loved to have when we were beginning."

Botts Massey is most proud of the conference's aesthetic track, which includes lectures from top aesthetic providers in the country, with the opportunity for attendees to partake in hands-on, intimate workshops and watch injection and laser demonstrations up close.

"I think one of the things that the FSDPA has always been known for is bringing really high value education that's not going to cost an arm or a leg. Especially in aesthetics, just a ticket in the door is almost $1,000 for an aesthetic conference," she said. "That's without any workshops or anything. We are just lucky that this is our 16th year; we've been doing this long enough that we can bring in some of the big guns."

Heather Gates, PA-C, is the current president of the FSDPA and the organization's current conference director. Gates serves as a primary liaison for the conference's accommodations, staffing, vendors, and industry partners. She echoed Botts Massey's excitement about the conference's tracks.

"I think that this is going to be really great," she said. "People can really dive in according to where they are in the dermatology space, whether they just do general dermatology, whether they just do aesthetics, or if they do a little bit of both, they can kind of tailor that to their own practice. You need to cater to everyone. You need to have those high-level talks for the experienced derm provider, but you also need to teach people who are new grads or have only been practicing for a few years. I think it's going to be a really great opportunity for whoever comes to have education tailored to their specific needs."

Pearls and Takeaways

"This is our passion project," Gates said. "We work really, really hard to not only make the education great, but the experience great, as well."

Both Botts Massey and Gates hope attendees will take away practical pearls with the ultimate goal of advancing patient care.

"This is my conference I go to when I want a lot of pearls. I don't need like the basics; I want to know things that are going to help me in practice, whether that's surgical techniques, or billing and coding," Botts Massey said. "I usually come home my notebook full of all my notes, and I just hope that it's going to be like that for everybody. I hope that they walk away with some really helpful knowledge that they're going to be able to immediately utilize in their everyday practice."

Gates hopes attendees can also walk away from the conference feeling a sense of community.

"While we may look like a small, little regional society, it's really become a national conference. I'm hoping that people can improve patient outcomes from this across the US," she said. "Additionally, just develop a support network across Florida and the US too, because you meet so many different people who are nurse practitioners, PAs, doctors, from all over. It can create this nice dermatology community that becomes a support network for each other, and you can reach out to somebody if you have questions or need help, too. Here in Florida, it's truly a derm community, and we're trying to create that everywhere."

For more information on the conference and how to register, visit the FSDPA's website or connect with the FSDPA team by emailing contact@fsdpa.org.

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